Saturday 23 September 2017

Spurs pile pressure on Kean

BLACKBURN RVS 1 TOTTENHAM 2,

Tim Rich

As he tries to soothe the pain of the heaviest defeat of his managerial career, Alex Ferguson might consider that the last major team to be humiliated at home by Manchester City have recovered rather well.

On August 28, Tottenham were bottom of the Premier League having been taken apart 5-1. But yesterday brought their fifth victory in half-a-dozen subsequent games and, but for a late Newcastle equaliser at St James' Park, all six would have been won.

This was perhaps the toughest victory of the lot, achieved against a Blackburn side that, however much their supporters wish for the dismissal of their manager Steve Kean, resisted with more passion than many might have expected from a side who have picked up less than a point a game since he took over.

What Blackburn did not possess was the kind of quality in front of goal that Tottenham were able to call upon, especially in the shape of Rafael van der Vaart, who scored both of the visitors' goals.

The first came on 15 minutes. Kyle Walker made a driving, muscular run down the right and then drew two defenders before pulling the ball back beautifully for the Dutchman to apply the finishing touch.

His second, after 53 minutes, was rather more fortuitous but rather better taken.

The ball deflected off Benoit Assou-Ekotto's knee into the path of van der Vaart, who scored with an exquisite side-footed shot.

In between, Mauro Formica gave Blackburn hope. A long, high free-kick from Morten Gamst Pedersen caused chaos in the Spurs defence and Jason Roberts clambered above two black-shirted defenders to knock the ball down for Formica. (© Independent News Service)

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